In the Anthropocene, death and loss become pressing environmental concerns. Destruction of ecosystems, loss of biodiversity, war, the Covid-19 pandemic and slow environmental violence evoke anxiety and grief, manifested in science, art, theory and activism. Recognising commonly unacknowledged grief and researching what it is that we mourn help us understand our relations to the environment, and what we choose to value, preserve or revive.
Theoretically grounded in Environmental Humanities, Feminist Posthumanities and Queer Death Studies, this 4-year project aims to investigate philosophical, artistic and scientific representations of eco-grief in the Nordic context, and thus to:
- Synthesise cultural theory and philosophical understandings of eco-grief;
- Explore eco-grief and crisis imaginaries in contemporary Nordic art;
- Investigate scientific imaginaries of eco-grief, crisis and resilience;
- Set out the grounds for thinking eco-grief in an integrative way.
Empirically, the project examines select contemporary artworks, scientific and popular-scientific communication, existing literature and cultural productions with the use of mixed cultural methods: visual, textual, conceptual, discourse and cultural analysis. It responds to the imminent need of understanding ourselves and our relation to the world around us at the time of unprecedented planetary crises.
The project is funded by FORMAS: A Swedish Research Council for Sustainable Development.